I have searched the world over to find homeschool curriculum for my kids. At first, it is very overwhelming. There is an overabundant amount of resources out there. To be honest, I was scared I would never find the right stuff. But yet, after days on end of searching the internet, I found this hidden gem: http://www.k5learning.com/. This was the best thing to ever happen for my family. I was searching for something that would teach my kids on the level they needed to be taught, not the predetermined grade level most sites offered. Also, I wanted a full curriculum. It’s easy to find a site for math, or spelling, or reading, etc., but harder to find one for the entire “grade level”…. at a decent price, anyway. This resource offers a free 14 day trial, with a free placement assessment to determine exactly where your child needs help, and what areas they have mastered and don’t need to waste time on. After the 14 day trial, the cost is $25 per month for the first student and just $15 per month for each additional student. So for my 2 school aged children I only pay $40 a month for a complete curriculum, which, if you have already shopped around, you know is a good deal. The best part about this site, for me, is that I’m not “a teacher” per say, and this site is mostly centered around the student rather than the parent. You create their log ins, and help them get started and from then on it’s pretty much sign in and go for the kids. Parents can log in and check reports and assessment scores but don’t need to log in daily. Once a week would do. It’s a life saver for a busy parent.
Here’s another great one. http://www.typingweb.com/. This one is for learning to type. It offers a LONG list of lessons that vary from someone who has never touched a keyboard to pro level practice. Each lesson is progressive so it builds on the last lesson. The best part is this one is FREE!
This site (http://www.coolmath-games.com/) is awesome because while it’s got “math” in the title, it actually has great educational games for reading/spelling, geography, science, logic, memory and other stuff, too. All for FREE, which I love!
A great FREE math resource is http://www.sumdog.com. My kids love this one. You can create a user name and password for your kids on this site and they can work on particular lessons each time.
We love http://www.turtlediary.com because it has FREE games that are all educational. There are also lessons on this site. The more the merrier, I say. What’s cool about this one is that they are all grouped by grade level which makes them easier to find. Plus, my kids like to “work ahead” and do things from the next grade level, which is great because I hate how most gaming sites have things grouped by category but not educational level and they end up working on skills they mastered 2 years ago just because the game looks fun. Games are also grouped on this site (once you select a grade level) by subject. So I can say “go to turtle diary and play 2 English games and 1 science game.” They love that they get to choose the game. I love that I know what skills they are working on. Win, win.
Something my kids enjoy on occasion is having books read to them. One thing they miss from public school. This site http://www.storylineonline.net is great because they use videos to read to the kids, so it’s not just a voice over. You actually see a teacher-type figure reading to you.
http://www.kidrex.org is probably the coolest thing my kids have found. This site is powered by Google and it’s a kid-friendly version of the world’s most popular internet search engine. My kids love to research things but with all the crazies out there it makes Mama uneasy to give them free internet access. This thing is awesome. They can research things for school, search for games, or whatever else they want to do, and the only things that come up are links to safe sites. We did a practice run on the first time we accessed it. I’m not sure why, but we chose to search for ‘furniture’ and our results were awesome. It brought up every kid furniture store link you can think of and shows pictures of kids rooms. It’s completely geared towards children and we love it. It makes them feel awesome and it makes me feel safer.
Homeschooling can be great if you use the right resources. There are plenty of sites out there but if you don’t have the time to weed through them all, follow these links and you’ll be surprised how well your kids can do at home. Even if you aren’t a teacher, having the best material ensures a better homeschooling experience. Having good material doesn’t mean you have to sell your house to buy it either. There are plenty of free resources out there.